Sunday, March 6, 2011

Surveilling Crunchy

I was at the library, and I wish I'd thought of this earlier. But suddenly I had the thought, that I ought to be keeping track of this guy we've been calling Crunchy.

With the thought -- as he was going stack to stack -- I got out my trusty pen. I was just bragging this morning about the pen -- a pink pen -- that I've had it a long time without losing it, a rarity for me. But guess what, suddenly the pen was broken, missing the nub, or it was pushed in and the very end broken off. I had no choice but to rely on my memory or get one of the little pencils they always have in libraries. That's what I did.

Next, I spotted Crunchy and went over and sat right across from him. I got my notebook and just then, literally at that second, he picked up his stuff and left. So my surveillance for the day was ended before it began.

But backtracking, here's what I saw: Him seated, him wandering around, him checking out items either off the shelves, the tables, or the racks.

I should say how we came to give him the name Crunchy. This is a flashback: A couple weeks ago (or so) I and the Pink Professor were at the library. We've been going there and perusing the goods. I like to read the first few pages of a few books. Then I see something else and make a beeline for it. I actually did read an entire book the other day, a story of a North Korean spy in South Korea who suddenly gets what appears to be an order to return home.

Anyway, the P.P. and I were at the library. He was already seated and I came into that particular area. My eyes then met this guy with long gray hair and a big gray beard. I averted my eyes quickly, since that freaks me out. I sat with my back to him. What followed was unpleasant. I kept hearing the rustling of paper, making the sound of presents being unwrapped, and this guy giggling. He'd then get up, go into the stacks, then return within seconds to repeat the whole process. I was looking up at the P.P. and making facial expressions, like, "WTF?" If I were to turn around, my smart aleck remark might have been, "Happy birthday, I hope you got everything you wanted."

After a while I couldn't stand it anymore. So I got up and glanced around. He had the inner liner bag of a box of cereal out by itself and was eating cereal from it. It made the crunching noise whenever he reached in. I went to a different area where I could read in peace. Later we were talking about the guy and the P.P. nicknamed him Crunchy.

Over the last few weeks, then, I've been there several times, and usually Crunchy's there too, sans the cereal.

Today I was there, as I said. I was reading some strange quaint things in a book by a guy from Tasmania, I glanced up and saw Crunchy going into the stacks. A few seconds later he was on the other side of the room coming from the opposite stacks, and it reminded me of the movie scenes where guys are running in and out of doors and coming out on the opposite side of the hallway. I messaged the P.P., "Crunchy's here." He messaged me back, "Munch munch munch."

A few seconds later's when it occurred to me like a lightning bolt that if I want strange quaint things, all I need to do is look up and watch this guy!

So I got myself in position, as stated above, to do surveillance on him, and that's when he left. Or did he? I saw him get up and go a certain direction. But I started thinking, Is there a door there? Maybe he's downstairs. I went downstairs and looked for him but there was no sign. (I didn't check the bathroom.)

Oh well, I'll leave it to another day, if he does anything interesting. As for today, it looks like there's nothing much to report.

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